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Start the New Year sustainably

Sustainability is so important for all of us to take seriously, and here at Playtime, we like to get engaged and offer suggestions for a more ecological lifestyle! A common problem that we all face is food waste, especially during the holidays! It’s easy to end up with leftovers from special recipes that you don’t know what to do with, but don’t want to waste. An abundance of celery, leftover bread, and overripe bananas are just a few of the leftovers we had after our holiday cooking, so we consulted BBC Goodfood to find recipes for them! Here are 5 of our favorites to help reduce food waste! To make them even better, these recipes are super simple, making it easy for kids to help out!

Let’s start the New Year in an eco-conscious (and delicious) way!

kid's recipes

Tossed on top of your favorite soup or salad, who doesn’t love croutons? Don’t let leftover bread go to waste, but transform it into this tasty topping! Little ones will love the added crunch in any dish, even salads!

-Your preferred cooking oil
-Leftover bread (any kind, be it a baguette, ciabatta, or bobalki!)
-Your preferred seasoning (garlic, herbs, salt and pepper, whatever you like!

1 Cut bread into bite size pieces.
2 Heat a pan with the cooking oil of your choice.
3 Once the oil is hot, add the bread and whatever seasoning you selected.
4 Stir occasionally until the bread is golden brown.
5 Serve immediately or store in a container!

This is just one way to use leftover bread, find more recipes here!

child friendly recipe

It is always disappointing when bananas start to get too ripe! A common solution is to make banana bread, but we decided that this looked even more delicious! Take a bite of tasty chocolate baked bananas, and pair it with your favorite ice cream! This is a treat that is yummy and healthy for little ones!

-4 ripe bananas
-2 x 32g bag chocolate buttons
-Your favorite ice cream flavor, to serve

1 Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 (or a BBQ).
2 Make a slit through the skin of the bananas along one side – making sure you don’t cut all the way through to the other side.
3 Poke in the chocolate buttons along the cut. Put each banana onto a sheet of foil and crimp the edges together to seal into a parcel.
4 Transfer to a baking sheet and cook for 25 mins until the bananas have turned black (or pop straight into the BBQ embers for 15 mins).
5 Serve with a scoop of ice cream and any melted chocolate that has escaped!
Find more overripe banana recipes here!

children recipe

With all the different recipes the holidays call for, it's easy to end up with a few sticks of celery, a handful of carrots, or a single onion. Why not make a scrumptious and versatile veggie stock with these remainders? Warm children up and get them to eat veggies with this stock!

-Celery sticks, carrots, leeks, onions, or any other leftover veggies, diced
-2 garlic cloves, bashed
-1 star anise and 5 peppercorns
-Parsley stalks, sprigs of thyme, and other extra herbs, tied with string

1 Tip everything into a large saucepan with a pinch of salt then cover with 2 litres of water.
2 Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 2 hours.
3 Pass through a sieve and use for your intended recipe.
Will keep in the fridge for a week and for six months in the freezer.
There are plenty more recipes, especially for leftover celery!

kid's recipe

A common snack at holiday parties is nuts and dried fruits, but what do you do with the remaining ones after the party is over? Why not add them to some freshly cooked couscous for a delicious sweet and salty meal! It’s so easy to make, and kids will love to help!

-200g couscous
-200ml kettle-hot water or boiling vegetable stock (perhaps the one you made with your leftover vegetables?)
-1 tbsp olive oil
-Chopped dried fruit and nuts

1 Tip the couscous into a heatproof bowl and pour over the water or stock.
2 Cover with cling film or a lid and leave for 5-10 mins until the couscous is soft.
3 Fluff the couscous up with a fork, drizzling with the olive oil, and mix in chopped up fruit and nuts.
4 Top with fresh lemon juice, salt, and pepper!
Find other recipes for random leftovers like a single carrot here!

kid's recipe

Give leafy greens a new life by frying them up with some frozen peas for a delicious side dish of griddled lettuce and peas! Whether iceberg lettuce, kale, or spinach, this meal will get kids to enjoy their veggies!

-3 tsp white wine vinegar
-1 tbsp olive oil
-1 garlic clove, crushed
-1 tbsp chopped parsley
-1 tbsp chopped mint
-2 Baby Gem lettuces, halved
-140g frozen peas

1 To make a dressing, mix the vinegar, 2 tsp of the oil, the garlic, and herbs in a small bowl.
2 Heat a griddle pan.
3 Brush the lettuces in the remaining oil and cook on the griddle for 3 mins each side until charred.
4 Bring a small pan of water to the boil, add the peas and cook for 3 minutes.
5 Drain the peas and mix with the lettuce and dressing.
6 Serve straight away.
Explore other recipes for leftovers!

Which recipe will you be trying to reduce waste and start the New Year off with a sustainable mindset?


We like(d)!